Community society

Lund Community Society asks qRD for access to the old fire station

Efforts are underway to repurpose the former Lund Fire Station building which has been vacated.

During the Qathet Regional District (qRD) Committee of the Whole on February 17, Charles Latimer, Treasurer of the Lund Community Society (LCS) appeared before the committee to set up new uses for the former fire station. He said LCS used the old school in Lund, which is now the community center, and had an ongoing lease since 2017.

With the construction of the new Northside Volunteer Fire Department fire hall on Highway 101, LCS has the opportunity to house some of its programs in the old facility on Larson Road, adjacent to the community center, according to Latimer.

“We have the ability to host some of our programs and so that’s what the proposal is,” Latimer said. “I am happy to see that the draft proposal is for an assessment of the building and that the staff are working with us. I am very excited about this.

“We did quite a bit of community consultation on what we would have in this building. There are a lot of parents enthusiastic for a skate ramp out there. There is a clothing swap program that needs space, as well as a community bike shop for Bike Lund.

Electoral Area D Director and All-Chair Committee Sandy McCormick said she wanted to welcome the proposal presented by LCS.

“It’s very detailed and contains a lot of information,” McCormick said. “It will certainly help us understand what you are trying to do.”

Electoral Area E Director Andrew Fall said the vision was excellent.

“Having a place where kids can go and skate on the ramp is fantastic,” Fall said. “You need volunteers to open and close it. Will it be hard work? Someone will have to be there.

Latimer said LCS has attempted to resolve this issue.

“We decided the easiest way to move forward would be to have volunteer chaperones,” Latimer said. “It could be people involved in the clothing swap, parents caring for their children, or people volunteering with the community bike shop.

“What we’re suggesting is having consistent training on what that entails, opening up the space and having regular shifts. After launching antennas, we already have about fifteen people interested in helping us. Once we move forward, we’ll make it more concrete.

McCormick said she had a question about insurance for the proposed skate park. She asked if that would be a problem.

Latimer said this is where LCS is most proactive.

“We have already contacted our insurance provider for the LCS,” Latimer said. “We have insurance for our board members and for the building itself. I don’t have any numbers yet, but as soon as I have some I will share them with Regional District staff. I know that’s one of the big concerns of the regional district, making sure the insurance is in place for all the structures.

The committee passed a motion recommending that regional board staff conduct an assessment of the former Lund Fire Hall building to inform on the safety and integrity of the structure. The motion also stated that staff should engage with the North Side community on the future of the Old Hall and return to council with recommendations.